Sunday, May 30, 2010

James 5:7-12 Patience and Endurance

Don't try to escape that trial! If God has put you there, remain right where you are. The word endure in the Bible is hupomone, and it means to remain under the pressure of (Romans 5:3). I want to ask you today what kind of pressure you are facing. First off, are you where God wants you to be? If so and you are facing trials and problems, stay firm and endure. Today, we will be learning about the importance of patience.

(vv7-8) PATIENCE: I believe that over the last nine months God has been using my circumstances in order to teach me patience amidst other things. In truth, the last nine months haven't been enjoyable and the thought of going home is ever present. Although this is true, I am called to be patient and endure, just like the farmer who waits until the harvest. In life we are going to go through hard times. We as Christians are going to go through many months, possibly years, wondering where God is, asking ourselves why He has deserted us. During these times strengthen your hearts. Yes, strengthen your hearts, but how? We strengthen our hearts by reading the Word, pulling out the promises of God, and standing on them. Let's stand on God's promises and trust in Him. He is highly glorified in this.

(v9) DON'T COMPLAIN: Don't complain? But I'm going through a really tough time, how can the Bible ask me not to complain? It advises us so that we might be pleasing and honoring to Christ. Listen to this: A master has many servants working in the field, he selects one and gives him the hardest work in the field but secretly plans to pay him the best out of all the other workers. The master expects his worker to have a good attitude hoping that the worker will trust in his faithfulness and fairness. When the master tells the worker that he will return, he hides in a bush and watches the worker. The worker complains and curses under his breath all day long. He even cursed at his fair master, being very short-sighted, the only one he damaged was himself. When the master returned he was very disappointed with the servant. He told the wicked servant about the wonderful pay he had for him but how his complaining lost him his wages. In the same way we must trust our Good Master. We must trust that He loves us dearly and has the best in mind for us.

(vv10-11) BIBLICAL EXAMPLES: Let's follow the biblical example that have been left for us. How many of you have read the story of Job and learned about the suffering that he faced. What happened? This man Job went through horrible trials, and not once did he curse God. After years, Job was blessed by God double, double than what he had before! Because of his endurance and faithfulness God blessed him abundantly. We also have the prophets, faithful men who loved the Lord and proclaimed His Word. They went through some hard stuff but were still faithful to God; they now have their reward in heaven. God is full of compassion and mercy, so let's conduct ourselves in such a way that is pleasing to Him.

(v12) BE TRUE TO YOUR WORD: Finishing up, we are told not to swear. In other words to affirm, promise, threaten with an oath, or invoke. This passage is very often misinterpreted but all the James is saying here is to be true to your word. When you say something, do it! If you say yes, let others know that that is what you mean.

CONCLUSION: I don't know what you are going through right now, but know that if you are where God wants you to be and you're going through some tough stuff , it's good for you. Trust in God, strengthen your hearts, and stand on the Word, knowing that God will take care of His faithful servants.

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